NALA Volunteer Spotlight – March 2021
NALA Volunteer Spotlight: Lisa M. Stone, ACP
Lisa M. Stone, ACP, recently celebrated the 25th anniversary of earning her Certified Paralegal credential. This, along with earning her Advanced Certified Paralegal credential, are some of the proudest moments of her paralegal career.
“Certification is not something that is easily achieved and earned,” Stone said. “I worked hard for those and work hard to maintain them.”
These are not the only shining moments of her impressive career. In 2014, she was named the Paralegal of the Year by the Tulsa County Bar Association, and three years later, she received a NALA Affiliate Award. As she served in several leadership positions at her local association, the Tulsa Area Paralegal Association, she was instrumental in helping them update their technology usage by going more digital.
“I am by nature and personality a very detailed person, and that translates very well into the paralegal work,” Stone said. “I’ve also been extremely fortunate that in the bulk of my 25-year career, I have been fortunate to work for attorneys that have given me a tremendous amount of responsibility and let me exercise a lot of independent judgment. That has made my career just more rewarding overall.”
In her current role as Senior Paralegal for a corporation, Stone can build unique relationships with her clients – who also happen to be her co-workers.
“I like that I am on the same team they are. Our goal is the success of our company. I like that I serve them in a professional and legal capacity, yet I am also an employee of that same company. We are all invested in the success of our corporation and serving our customers,” Stone said. “I have really good friends in this company, yet I am serving them in a legal capacity. They trust me. We know each other well. That dynamic I think works very well.”
Throughout her career, Stone has learned some very valuable lessons that she shares with upcoming paralegals – never stop learning, do not burn bridges, and avoid underestimating the value of building relationships, whether in a personal or professional capacity.
“You can never predict how, when, or where you might encounter someone again that you cross paths with. Having a positive relationship with that person, even if it is just an acquaintance level, could prove invaluable,” Stone said. “Always take the high road when leaving a place of employment, even if you are leaving on unhappy terms. Leave in the most professional manner as possible because there is a very good chance you are going to cross paths with someone from that firm or company down the road. Those relationships are critical. You just can’t underestimate the importance of having connections and a network and maintaining it throughout your career.”
To give back to the field that has given her so much, Stone has served on the NALA Certifying Board since 2016. She is currently the Chairperson-elect and will start her term as Chair in July 2021.
“I absolutely love being a part of the Certifying Board. It has been one of the most rewarding things I have ever done in my career. I am especially moved that the committee is not just paralegals, but it also has attorneys on it under the bylaws,” Stone said. “I have loved working with those attorneys and [am] moved by their commitment, as well as the other members of the board that are certified paralegals and paralegal educators… people who are all passionate about NALA’s Certified Paralegal Program and making it the absolute best certification program possible. I am extremely proud of what we do.”
When she is not busy working, Stone enjoys spending time with her parents and her elderly cat Sadie. Once the pandemic subsides, she is ready to continue pursuing her other love – traveling. With memories of London, Paris, and beautiful warm beaches, she has the travel bug.